To everyone who has followed this story since the beginning and hung in there with me as it has moved from my mind to the page, you have my deep gratitude. I especially thank those reviewers that offered me such thoughtful feedback and encouragement along the way, particularly on such a dark story.

A special shout out to the wee Dragonish-reader whose commitment to this tale and intermittent pleas for its completion spurred me on to finally finish. I want to thank my dear reader, X, too, for her faithful proofreading, despite the fact her heart belongs only to the Egoists.

Also, I dedicate these last chapters to the amazing Black Flamingo 101. It was her love of the Romanticas that pulled me into a deeper exploration of the couple, broadening my previously narrow view of their relationship. Thank you, Flamingo, for being my sounding board for so much of this piece. I couldn't have written it without you.

My dear readers, hope this ending satisfies.

Days without Sun

Epilogue V: The End and the Beginning

It wasn't until the screen went black that Akihiko realized his eyes had been elsewhere for ages. With a light frown he swiped a finger over the keyboard's mouse reviving the screen, but only long enough for him to save his chapter and shut the laptop down.

This accomplished, his gaze immediately returned to its previous distraction: watching Misaki washing the dishes from the late supper they'd recently shared. To anyone else the scene would have been of little interest, boring at best, but for Akihiko, his beautiful, broken boy scrubbing away with such vigor, held a normalcy that made his heart ache with nostalgia.

I want that back...

Before he'd even finished the thought, the tightness in his troubled chest increased. He knew that such a wish was futile, their old life irretrievable. Akihiko's lips pressed into a firm line with the resolution he'd found himself making a thousand times a day since Misaki had first been taken from him.

We are going to build a new life together… one even stronger and better than before… No matter the price or how long it takes.

There had been countless moments over the past weeks when this promise had felt reckless, empty, hopeless, but the time he and Misaki had shared that day made it finally seem possible.

Akihiko brushed the back of his hand across his mouth. Even now, hours later, his lips still buzzed with the memory of his lover's most intimate parts. He hoped to never forget that sweet reunion. Their lovemaking out on the balcony had been exquisite, and after, entangled together, they had fallen into a deep slumber.

It was the first sleep they'd shared since his rescue that Misaki had awoken peacefully, not thrashing about trying to escape the claws of some nightmare.

Please, Akihiko petitioned whatever deity might be listening, let this be the start of sweeter dreams for him.

Across the open bar in the kitchen, a soapy glass slipped from Misaki's hand. While it didn't break, it hit the side of the sink with a thunk, jarring him from the reverie he'd been lost in. Green eyes flashed up in surprise and his cheeks grew pink when he caught Akihiko's staring at him with such intensity.

Quickly he dropped his gaze back down to the sink. Covering his embarrassment he mumbled, "I thought you were w-writing, Usagi-san."

Pushing himself away from the table, Akihiko stood. He noted the sudden tension in Misaki's thin frame at his movement, so he paused, waiting.

"I finished. Thought I might assist you with the dishes." He watched Misaki's eyes widen at the offer and was pleased when the stiff shoulders suddenly relaxed.

"The b-best way you can assist, Usagi-san, is to stay out of the kitchen." Misaki grumbled in feigned annoyance. "It wouldn't be taking me n-nearly this long to clean up if you hadn't already been so 'helpful' with making dinner."

Akihiko couldn't help but break into a grin at the truth of this. But tonight was the first time Misaki had really cooked, and he'd been unable to keep away from the kitchen and out from under his feet.

Seeing that Misaki had turned his attention back to the escaped glass he'd recaptured, Akihiko ambled over. He caught Misaki keeping track of him out of the corner of an emerald eye; but even though his entrance in to the kitchen was watched, his boy remained easy.

Slipping behind Misaki, Akihiko slowly pressed in. He extended his arms around, eventually catching soap-slicked hands in his own. He felt desire spark when he noted the overlarge shirt Misaki wore had fallen down off of one shoulder and how, beneath bright scars, the richening tones of his boy's skin were set off by the white tie of the apron he'd donned for his cleanup.

Leaning his silvered head over this enticing bit of his blossom, Akihiko growled teasingly into a pinking ear.

"I'm the cause of your extended clean up? But I wasn't the one who kept spilling things…"

Half-expecting Misaki to bat his hands away and protest, Akihiko was pleasantly surprised when, instead; Misaki allowed the glass he was holding to slip back down beneath the water's surface and then tangled their fingers together.

"Well, it's hard not to when there's a big idiot around who can't keep his hands to himself."

His tone held a certain amount of huff, but even as Misaki said these words, he pressed his back against Akihiko's broad chest. He couldn't help himself. Their time on the balcony had only stoked the low flames that had been burning inside him for days. And, while their earlier coming together held certain healing, Misaki felt himself gripped with an overwhelming desire for more.

Akihiko lifted his head, nuzzling into the growing dark curls, kissing the silky strands, proof of Misaki's gradual physical restoration. One of his hands disentangled itself and drew back, only to carefully slip under Misaki's apron. It dipped down, sliding easily under the too-loose waist band of the khaki shorts the teen had changed into.

"Forgive me for wanting an appetizer before dinner, Misaki."

Misaki shivered as the cool, wet hand feathered over the jut of his hipbone and tentatively traced downwards from there. He felt his skin tingle as fingertips lightly combed through the small brush of hair at the base of his cock.

"I won't extend the dime-store romance cliché here further, however, with a mention of desiring dessert."

The back of Misaki's neck grew hot at these words; he could feel a new blush rising to his cheeks. "S-stupid Usagi, you just did…"

The color in Misaki's cheeks was actually only due in small part to Akihiko's sappiness. Most of it was caused by the fact that he had been thinking along these same lines, and knew that he wouldn't find peace tonight until Usagi-san had claimed him completely.


Akihiko had grinned at Misaki's retort, but a second later he sensed his boy had drifted from him. He lightened his touch but continued his soft petting, waiting for him to return. A quiet sigh of relief escaped Akihiko when a few moments later Misaki relaxed back, settling further against him. Lazy fingertips meandered lower, grazing the skin of his lover's shaft and a low moan slipped out from between Misaki's plush lips.

His rabbit had always touched him so skillfully, but with his new understanding, Usagi-san's caresses had become even more profound. A second wave of heat washed over Misaki; his whole body flushed this time. He wiped a sudsy hand across his suddenly damp brow. His cock throbbed at each touch and quickly filled.

This… It's too good.

"This" wasn't just the magic of Akihiko's hand.

There in the small kitchen, bathed in warm light, with his lover so solidly behind him, for the first time Misaki felt really safe and more like himself than he had in months.

Almost… "normal."

The feeling overwhelmed him and he blinked back tears.

Why is this so difficult? Everything is so perfect right now, but I can hardly bear how this feels.

"Misaki?" Akihiko called out softly: he'd become too attuned to his boy's sudden shifts.

Against him his boy's slender body tremored. Leaning in again, Akihiko kissed Misaki's temple. There, he encountered a bit of foam left behind from Misaki's hand. As he brushed this off with the bridge of his nose, Akihiko became worried: his lover's forehead felt terribly hot. He hoped that this didn't mean that Misaki was coming down with another one of the strange fevers that had plagued him ever since he'd been rescued.

"Usagi-san…" Misaki whispered his name so softly Akihiko almost missed it.

"Yes, Love…" It didn't bother Akihiko that once their time on the balcony had ended; Misaki had gone back to calling him by his old nickname. He understood that the boy would only call him by his first name on occasion: times when it would communicate to him things that Misaki could otherwise not.

The feeling Misaki had just experienced was already ebbing away and in its wake something new was taking hold. Not wanting to lose his brief bliss, he slipped his other hand out of Akihiko's and gripped the cool edge of the stainless steel sink to anchor himself. It was no use, however, this sensation was even more powerful.

Fresh tears stung Misaki's eyes and he dipped his head down.

My last day on the beach, before Korovin… that had felt close to perfect too.

A blade of fear pierced Misaki's chest, knowing now how easily and irrevocably one's fragile utopia could be shattered.

Whatever happens, I never want Usagi-san to have any doubt that I love him.

Akihiko's silvered head had followed after Misaki's, trying to catch what his blossom was murmuring. His pale eyes widened when, suddenly, unexpectedly, Misaki turned his face towards him and caught his mouth in an anxious kiss. Akihiko drew back in surprise, but just for an instant.

His lips met Misaki's and at the taste of him, he couldn't help himself. Hungrily Akihiko began devouring each new kiss his lover offered. Unlike their more careful exchange of earlier, here was a frantic consumption. The quiet kitchen echoed with sounds of wet smacks and sucks as fervent lips sought and tongues tangled.


At a break in their intense oral embrace to draw breath, Akihiko found his air-impoverished lungs suddenly empty again when he heard Misaki's panted whisper.

"Usagi-san. In-inside me… P-please."


Akihiko couldn't help but exclaim at his tender lover's bold request. Pulling back, his gaze was met with Misaki's "messy," crying face, but despite this and the fact Misaki was blushing furiously, the younger man's expression was determined.

Akihiko reached up with his free hand and gently brushed across a tear-stained cheek with his thumb.

"Here… Right now?"

It was a stupid question, but all that he could utter at the moment in his shock.

Of course, it made a strange sort of sense too; Misaki had always been far more comfortable in the kitchen than he ever had in the bedroom. Even so, Akihiko was mildly stunned. While they had made great progress out on the balcony, he'd imagined it would be days, perhaps weeks or even longer before Misaki might be open to that kind of intimate contact.

Misaki turned his head away. Gripping the edge of the sink tighter, he nodded. Never in his life had he imagined that he'd petition for this, at least not so openly. But he never thought he'd find himself consumed with such burning need either.

"Stupid, Usagi… Y-yes!" Misaki barked out, his voice hoarse with embarrassment. He didn't know what had come over him but he was desperate. He wanted to drown in Usagi-san filling him before he was pulled under by the sense of impending disaster that had him.

Misaki almost sobbed with relief when he felt Usagi-san's long fingers leave off their stirring strokes in a flash to fumble with the catch on his shorts.

The cool air of the suite caressed the skin of his thighs as his khakis slipped from bony hips before the zipper had even been pulled. A moment later, his briefs were slid down and his ass bared as well. Leaning over the counter, settling his weight on his forearms, Misaki groaned and pressed into the cool of Usagi-san's hands. However, he suddenly stiffened and began to panic when these same hands moved and began to pull up his shirt.

"Usagi-san… m-my…"

"Shhhh," The deep voice behind him soothed. "We'll keep the apron on you… Yes?" But I want… I need to feel you, skin against skin…

Please, Misaki."

The desire held in Akihiko's low tones went straight to Misaki's core. He could feel his balls tighten and the tip of his dick was already pearling with want. Knowing that the apron would cover his abdomen, and that the scars on his back, while numerous, did not hold the cruel words Korovin had carved into the flesh of his front, reluctantly he acquiesced.

Besides, he was so hot at the moment, even the airy touch of his large shirt felt suffocating.

Misaki lifted his arms only long enough for Akihiko, with some skillful maneuvering, to get the garment off over his head without having to untie the apron. He was shocked at how erotic the feel of the slender strings were against his bare skin as they settled back into place.

He was struck too by the thought that he should have felt degraded, standing there, hands once again gripping the counter, his ass out, wearing the fetish costume of countless sordid Japanese fantasies; but he couldn't make the feeling stick. Korovin had dressed him up, posed him, soiled him, in ways so far beyond this. Being here with his dear Usagi-san, safe in their New Days cocoon, what would have struck him as so decadent before, now seemed strangely pure.

This was as far as Misaki got in his thoughts before the feeling of "skin on skin" left his mind reeling. There was suddenly no room for anything in his brain beyond his rabbit's touch.

The moment Misaki's shirt was fully off and tossed to the side atop a stack of drying dishes, Akihiko had stripped off his own. His need to possess was ardent, and he was barely able to retain his newly acquired caution, so stirred by the fact that Misaki had allowed himself to be revealed in this way.

Embracing Misaki from behind, Akihiko's nipples tightened instantly at the brush of Misaki's naked back against his chest. He held his lover close for a long moment, trying to calm himself before he began kissing his way down Misaki's neck.

Akihiko was shocked by the heat of Misaki's skin; even his own mouth seemed cool in comparison. He wanted to pause and make sure his lover was feeling okay, but the muffled, desperate sounds escaping his boy at each brush of his lips made him fearful of stopping.


Murmuring his favorite mantra, his lips traced the path of still-too-visible spine downwards. Akihiko's large hands settled on Misaki's shoulders, fingers fanned out, thumbs meeting in the middle like a pair of pale wings.

"Usagi-san," Misaki gasped out. He allowed one of his hands to slip down and encircle his cock. A shudder ran through him as he swept his thumb over its red tip. He felt the slickness there. Opening his eyes, he peered downwards through his lengthening, dark bangs and saw a small puddle had formed on the tiles below him. His dick had never wept so hard before.

While he'd intended to stroke himself, Misaki found a sudden change in tactics required. As the cool palms soothing his shoulders feathered down, following the warm, wet trail of Usagi-san's mouth, Misaki gripped his cock hard at the base to keep from coming undone, just from the feeling of his lover's caresses alone.

Behind him Akihiko slipped down to his knees. Misaki trembled at the feeling of large palms cupping his ass, spreading his cheeks. Akihiko nipped sensually down past his hips, his tailbone, his…


Akihiko's mouth on that place for the second time that day, the spot where he'd been most defiled, sent a burst of flame searing up Misaki's spine. He felt soft lips kiss the delicate rim of him.

Akihiko extended the tip of his tongue and traced the rouged ring of Misaki's entrance. He tasted light traces of soap from the shower his lover had taken after they'd woken, but what he really wanted was to taste Misaki. Strong hands kneaded his boy's ass before he gripped tight cheeks harder and spread them apart. He licked, thrilling at the feel of Misaki pulsing beneath his tongue. Pressing in, he invited his blossom to open.


From above him, Akihiko could hear the urgency in his boy's voice. He pulled back and kissed one of Misaki's cheeks. He hummed happily into his lover's heated skin before slicking his tongue back to the quivering entrance. One of Akihiko's hands shifted and took hold of Misaki's tight sac. He fondled this, pulling it lightly as his tongue sought entry again.

The next time Misaki called out his name, he said it so softly Akihiko barely heard it. But there was no doubt in his sharp ears the next whispered word that fell from his blossom's kissed-bruised lips:


Pale eyes darted up, seeking, and he located what he wanted. Misaki whimpered softly at the loss of contact when Akihiko pulled back. The author's low voice soothed with hushed promises as he reached out a lean arm and grabbed a bottle of olive oil from where it sat on the counter.

Skillfully, Akihiko flicked the top and allowed the light, amber oil to drip down, starting at the top of Misaki's ass crack. More oil was added to his finger, and seconds later his fingertip circled and slowly pressed in.

There was a moment of tension in both men as they waited to see how Misaki would respond to this breaching.

The urge to cum that had been building waned as Misaki was gripped with a fleeting unease. But he reminded himself this was his dear rabbit, and Usagi-san was being so gentle with him: the touch was like none Korovin had ever bestowed.

Drawing a deep, shaky breath, Misaki counted out his exhale slowly, all the while begging his body to relax.

Akihiko's heart raced as he entered Misaki. He paused, feeling the boy tighten around his finger.

When Misaki finally loosened, he growled sweet words of praise and began to gently slide only the first part of his index finger in. As he did, he continued to hold the anointing bottle of oil above in his other hand. Its slow drips added slick to his now pulsing finger ensuring that Misaki's insides were coated thoroughly.

For a brief moment, Akihiko found his mind drifting to darker spaces. In the soft light of the kitchen, when he had kissed Misaki's most intimate place, he had seen it was scarred even here. He should have expected to find this and he knew it: all of Korovin's victims had seen severe damage here. Many, including Misaki, had required surgical attendance, a few needing more than one surgery.

As his finger rhythmically probed his sweet blossom, Akihiko was aware that his fingertip was mapping Misaki's insides as well, feeling for anything that might cause him pain if they went further. He kept his ears attuned to his lover's labored breaths.

"Anytime you need me to stop, Misaki…"

"No!" Misaki growled, his normally light voice heavy with need. "Please, Usagi-san…"

Misaki felt his erection revive as Akihiko probed deeper, his finger finding the gland that brought so much pleasure. Even though he felt incredibly lewd, Misaki couldn't help himself and pushed back, his hips moving to create more friction.

Tension mounted in his low belly and his ecstasy built quickly. Misaki's mouth fell open as he forced aside everything but this instant and gave into abandon. Head bowed, spittle dripped from his gasping jaw, adding to the precum-slick on his cock. Taut and stiff once more, Misaki forsook any further attempt at restraint. He began stroking himself and in less than a minute gave a stifled cry as he came hard into his hand.

Akihiko had felt his own dick pumping thicker with each ecstatic noise his boy made. A smile of satisfaction settled on his features when Misaki rasped out and he felt him shudder to his climax. Once his lover had ceased trembling, Akihiko rose. He grimaced lightly at the ache in his knees from kneeling.

Quickly he unbuttoned his slacks and slipped out of these and his boxers. Freed from its constraint, his dick jutted eagerly up, its taut skin dark with desire. Slowly he stepped up closer, encircling Misaki in his arms again, careful of his boy's nipples, knowing how sensitive Misaki was after coming.

Large hands palmed Misaki's slick, heaving chest. Akihiko leaned his head over the apron-clad shoulder. "Misaki, I love you."

Beneath him, he could feel Misaki's racing heart begin to pound faster. He pressed his hard torso closer against salty skin. His anxious cock slipped into the groove of Misaki's cleft.

"I want you, Misaki."

Instinctively Akihiko's hips began to pulse; his cock slid back and forth, up and down the oiled crack of Misaki's ass. He stopped short, when his words pulled a quiet sob from the boy beneath him.


Akihiko's ears strained to hear above his panting breath. He couldn't make out what Misaki said. Then his beloved repeated his words just a bit louder.

"Take me… Please, Usagi-san."

Akihiko leaned his head down and rained light kisses on sweat-dewed shoulders.

"My sweet, Misaki…" He released Misaki to lean down and grab the bottle of olive oil from where he'd left it sitting on the floor. A low growl burned in his throat as he further slicked his already glistening cock .

Misaki moaned in response when the oiled tip of his rabbit's dick rubbed up against his waiting hole. Akihiko paused, looking at the bending body below him. Misaki's head was down, his lean sides heaving: it was a vision simultaneously beautiful and heartbreaking.

He ceased in his hesitation when Misaki whimpered with impatience. Holding his cock firmly in hand Akihiko moved forward.

The low whine in Misaki's throat turned into a groan. He felt himself redden at the animalistic sounds he was making, but he couldn't control himself: he wanted this so much. He embarrassed himself further by shifting his hips again, driving Usagi-san's shaft deeper into him when the man paused to allow him to adjust.

If Akihiko thought Misaki's body was hot on the outside, it was nothing compared to the molten silk of his boy's interior.


Akihiko's voice was so hoarse with pleasure, his beloved's name was barely recognizable. Sunk into Misaki to the hilt, at last, Akihiko began to pump his cock in slow shallow thrusts. He was surprised not only at how relaxed Misaki stayed when he took up this motion, but even more, his normally reticent lover was soon rocking back with each jolt to greet him, taking him deeper.

Together they moved, each meeting the other, their breath adopting a rough cadence as their passion built along with their pace.

Akihiko's hands had Misaki's hips, holding him fast as he pumped. Soon however, one slipped around the front, finding, to his delight, that Misaki was filling again already. Long fingers curled around the thickening shaft. Akihiko smiled into the skin of Misaki's drenched nape when his boy's light fingers settled atop his.

As he continued to move, Akihiko felt his breath growing more labored; his stressed lungs began to burn with exertion. Copious amounts of fluid leaked between the fingers holding Misaki's cock and his boy clenched around him, orgasming internally from the rub of cock against prostate.

Thrilled with Misaki's responsiveness, Akihiko kept on and soon Misaki cried out and shuddered again as he crested another peak of pleasure. Akihiko continued to move, but as the minutes built, an anxiety he had never experienced before filled him. He could hear Misaki panting below, feel the boy's tense and trembling body. Akihiko didn't know how much more Misaki would be able to take and he realized that for as long as he had been thrusting, he was still nowhere near coming.

In his confusion at this, he stilled. Akihiko felt his face take on a rare blush.

"Misaki… I'm pulling out…"

It took Misaki a moment to comprehend what Usagi-san was saying. His third orgasm had crashed over him like a white wave and he still hadn't fully come to his senses. He grunted at the feel of Usagi-san's cock leaving him. After at last feeling so filled, the sudden emptiness left him lost.

Misaki turned around slowly, afraid to meet his older lover's eyes.

"Usagi-s-san… Are you o-okay?"

Looking up, Misaki watched Akihiko run long fingers through silvered bangs. He was hit by a bolt of worry: Usagi-san looked strangely chagrined.

"I'm fine, Misaki. Or… well…" Akihiko rubbed the back of his neck uncomfortably. "I don't know if I will be able to cum this time… Not this way."

It took a moment for Misaki to understand. In all the time they had been together, Usagi-san's mastery of himself had been unquestionable; his ability to sustain or release had never been an issue.

Wanting to help, Misaki stepped up, reaching out with trembling fingers to take Usagi-san's still-hard cock in his hand only to have Akihiko stop him. The bottom dropped out of Misaki's stomach and the heavy-sweetness of release that had weighted his bones took flight.

"D-did I do something w-wrong, Usagi-san?"

A new thought came to Misaki and he bit back a sob, feeling his eyes well. "Is it because he had me?"

In an instant cool hands were cupping his chin, raising it up. Before he could protest or turn his face away, his mouth was caught in a breathtaking kiss. The kiss went on to shatter into a hundred other smaller kisses as lips anointed every inch of his anguished face.

"No, Misaki… Never…" Akihiko's voice was as frantic as his lips. "Never!"

"He never had you… Your heart… You are mine alone!" The hands left Misaki's chin, pulling him into a crushing embrace.

Usagi-san's words touched a deep place in Misaki, but it wasn't enough. If what he said was true, than Misaki had to know what was wrong: he couldn't be with Usagi-san if he couldn't also bring his lover pleasure. He set his hands against Akihiko's chest and pushed back, hard.

"Then what? Tell me Usagi-san… I… I want… I need for you to feel good too!"

Never had Akihiko considered that when this moment between them came, it would be he and not Misaki who was truly unready for the encounter. A small smile turned up the corners of his mouth. He shook his head in awe once again how remarkable his young lover was.


This time it was Misaki who stepped in, wrapping his arms around Akihiko. He buried his face into the strong chest and murmured into the scar over his rabbit's heart. "I love you."

"And I you, Misaki…"

Misaki held his embrace, even as he felt Usagi-san begin to move them. He allowed his body to follow and together they drifted out of the kitchen as is in a dance. Letting himself be guided, Misaki didn't raise his head until he felt the edge of their bed frame brush against the back of his legs. Without offering any protest he was maneuvered down until he was lying on his back amidst the soft, clean linens.

He felt his thighs parted and Akihiko move in between them. A moment later Usagi-san was lying lightly atop him. He opened himself up to tender seeking kisses. Tears escaped tightly clenched eyes to roll down Misaki's cheeks.

"Tell me what to do…," his whispered plea was desperate. "P-please, Usagi-san."

A warm breath ghosted over his cheek as Akihiko pleaded back. "Open your eyes, Misaki."

Green eyes opened slowly to meet a violet gaze so filled with love it threatened to break his heart.

"Look at me Misaki, please don't look away."

Through his tears Misaki nodded. He bit down on his bottom lip, not even aware he was doing so until Akihiko leaned in and teased it out from between his teeth with a sucking kiss. Misaki's gaze slipped and for a moment it darted down, watching, as above him Akihiko stroked himself quickly back to full hardness. Wide green eyes followed the rigid length of his lover's cock until its tip kissed his entrance. At this touch he looked back up.

The two lovers' gazes met and melded in the heat held between them. Misaki's lids dropped for only an instant when Akihiko entered him. They popped back open quickly and he was stunned by the smile that greeted him.


The way that Usagi-san says my name… with that face…

Misaki reached up and his hands caught the back of Akihiko's neck pulling him down into a kiss. Their mouths stayed married even as Akihiko began to move again. Despite being filled with Usagi-san's tongue and his cock, Misaki fought to keep his eyes wide, his soul accepting likewise the penetration of Usagi-san's intense violet gaze.

It didn't take long like this, however, with his boy lying so open beneath him, for Akihiko to ascend. He kept his gaze locked with Misaki's as long as he could, not wanting to miss a single second. Bracing himself up on one lean arm, Akihiko's other hand slid over Misaki's slick skin. Encountering his boy's cock lying full and weeping upon the teen's flat belly, he grasped it and began to stroke in time with his own increasingly rapid thrusts.

Both men's eyes closed as their climax rushed in upon them. Misaki's seed spilled out, coating his belly. He was still shuddering when felt his lover begin to pull out of him again, but this time he caught Akihiko's hips with his heels and tightened his grip around his rabbit strong neck, holding him.

Akihiko's eye flickered open in surprise.

"Please, Usagi-san… come inside me," Misaki gasped out: he needed this anointing.

The expression in Misaki's eyes alone would have pushed Akihiko over the edge. In an instant, with a final thrust, Akihiko roared possessively, re-claiming Misaki completely as he exploded inside the hot, wet passage that held him. The force of this jarred loose sobs from Misaki's hidden shelves. Misaki gripped Akihiko tighter. He wept at the feeling of Usagi-san filling him, each jet of his lover's essence inside him washing away the black residue Korovin had left behind.

Moments after he came, Akihiko collapsed down upon the smaller body beneath him, shuddering as Misaki stroked his trembling shoulders. They lay together that way for several minutes, both panting heavily, exhausted.


Akihiko's shaking didn't subside and soon Misaki felt a new wetness against the cooling skin of his neck. He realized in an instant that Usagi-san was in the grips of another, different, release.

His damaged hand moved, stroking through damp silver as he clung to Akihiko, feeling his older lover begin to silently sob against him. Usagi-san had been so strong for him, but at last... A small smile quirked Misaki's lips. He had invited Usagi-san in, but it was Akihiko who had truly been penetrated. He closed weary eyes as he felt Usagi-san finally still, then slip out of him only to gather him closer.

Turning his head to the side, amidst the white sheets surrounding him, Misaki suddenly found himself thinking about street lights and snowfall. That past white night they had first shared their tears together had been one beginning for them.

This night was another.

The End

Into the Light: Teaser

Chapter One: Flight

Misaki opened his eyes slowly, blinking. He'd been jarred from sleep by a bump. Not that he was disappointed to be roused, his dreams had been disturbing as usual.

It took him a moment to recall where he was and he blushed when he realized he was currently stretched across the length of two wide, plush seats. One of these seats also held Usagi-san, who he'd apparently been using as a pillow.

Feeling Misaki stir, Akihiko looked down from the book he'd been reading. He set the book face down on the seat across the aisle so he could reach down and brush the damp bangs back from Misaki's forehead.

Misaki was grateful that Usagi-san didn't verbalize the question his solemn face asked.

"I'm fine," he lied. "Feeling much better."

He winced as feelings of nausea contested this, however, quickly returning to him with his consciousness.

The cocked brow he received in response let him know that Akihiko wasn't buying it. Even so, Misaki was grateful he'd somehow been able to hide how sick he'd been feeling for the last week from Usagi-san until they'd gotten on the plane and into the air.

It had helped that Usagi-san had been so busy with all the travel arrangements for getting them back to Japan. Otherwise, Misaki had feared that between Usagi-san and his doctors, he would have been made to remain at New Days for even longer.

Realizing Akihiko was staring at him; Misaki frowned and closed his eyes against the intensity of his lover's violet gaze. He allowed the cool fingers to continue smoothing his brow: it was soothing.

"How much longer until we get there?"

Akihiko was worried, but his lips quirked into a slight smile at the question. He was pleased Misaki was so anxious to get home. However, he wondered if Misaki yet understood the true extent of what they'd be facing once they got to Tokyo; although they'd had a taste of it leaving the center.

Recalling the throngs of reporters that crowded around the limo as they pulled out of New Days to head to the airport, Akihiko grimaced. The events with Korovin had catapulted them into a dark kind of international stardom: everyone wanted to see and hear from those who'd survived.

Their trip to the airstrip had been slow going as cars followed alongside them, honking. Several helicopters, too, had circled above them on the drive to tarmac: paparazzi with high powered lenses hoping to get a shot of he and Misaki behind the limo's tinted glass.

He'd even had to have one of the flight attendants removed from the private Usami jet that had been sent from Japan to retrieve them, when he'd caught her trying to sneak pics with her phone of Misaki, curled up asleep, in his chair.

Thank Kami-sama we were still on the ground. I'm going to have the ass of whoever it was that let that bitch on this plane.

Snapping himself away from his dark thoughts, Akihiko answered at last. "We've been in the air just over ten hours so we have another ten, maybe eleven hours or so… Why?"

"Just wondering…" Misaki murmured sleepily.

Looking down at his boy, Akihiko felt a new wave of worry wash over him. He had agreed to let the doctors give Misaki a potent tranquilizer before leaving the center. Given how Misaki was with new spaces, even within New Days, despite the months they'd been there, this measure had made sense.

Akihiko knew Misaki had been terribly anxious about leaving. For the last week, in fact, the boy had been elusive and withdrawn. A pang of guilt pierced him that he hadn't been more available, but there had been so much to arrange before they left. Not only that, but he'd been advised of late that his hovering wasn't helping Misaki's recovery.

Fuck that, I'll hover if I want.

Akihiko looked down at his beloved. Misaki seemed to be sleeping again and he exhaled a soft sigh of relief. The doctors had promised there would be no side-effects to the tranquilizer, other than Misaki sleeping initially, and then maybe feeling a bit groggy later as the drug wore off. Given this, he had never anticipated that Misaki would have such a violent reaction; throwing up three times once they'd boarded the plane within the span of a few hours before finally drifting off into a fitful sleep. If he'd known, he would have never allowed them to give it to him.

Suddenly Misaki bolted upright.


"Bag!" Misaki rasped out, his face pale, forehead beaded with sweat.

Before Akihiko could call out, the remaining flight attendant was there, holding a plastic bag for Misaki to vomit into. Guaranteed by the fees she earned from Usami Corps for her services, her pretty, painted face remained a mask of serenity even as Misaki retched.

"Enough of this!"

Akihiko stood up and strode through the curtain separating the front quarters from the back of the jet where their personal Usami Corps' physician sat, along with one of the Usami lawyers, a publicist, and a team of mixed security professionals.

The Doctor looked up from his laptop where he was playing solitaire. "Mr. Usami."

"He's sick again. You said it wasn't the drugs, so what's going on?"

Used to attending demanding clients, Dr. Pena stood up and headed toward the front of the plane. When he and Akihiko had arrived at Misaki's seat, the flight attendant had already dealt with the mess. They found Misaki sitting relatively upright, a cool damp cloth on the back of his neck and a ginger ale clasped in one hand.

Weary eyes opened and Misaki stiffened at the sight of the doctor. Pena was relatively new to him and so, made him uneasy. He relaxed only slightly at the sight of Usagi-san standing behind the physician. It didn't help his anxiety that even though Akihiko looked composed, by the dark shade of Usagi-san's eyes he could tell that his Rabbit was angry about something.

Dr. Pena stepped closer and leaned down slightly. "Mr. Usami says you were sick again, Mr. Takahashi?"

Misaki felt his cheeks get hot. He looked nervously at Akihiko and then nodded.

"You told me what it was you'd eaten before, and given the source of your food there at New Days, food poisoning seems unlikely. And I understand you've never had an issue with flying before either. Right?"

Pena reached over to press his hand to Misaki's forehead but moved a little too quickly. He realized his mistake seeing him shrink back as Akihiko bristled forward.

"I'm just going to check your temperature, Mr. Takahashi… Please relax," Pena soothed. The moment his hand brushed against Misaki's skin he frowned: the boy was searing.

He looked over at Akihiko. "Well, I think we have our culprit. He wasn't running a fever before but he has one now. I was told he gets these frequently."

Akihiko frowned. "Never like this! They don't make him vomit!"

Despite the sharp tone in Usami's voice, Pena remained nonplussed. "Then it's likely a twenty-four hour bug. He should be over it by the time we land and hopefully no one else in this closed air system comes down with it."

"Please, make some ice packs up for Mr. Takahashi." Pena nodded to the attendant, who immediately headed back into the cabin's kitchen area to comply. "I'll go back to my things and get him some fever reducers. These measures and keeping him hydrated are the best we can do until we land."

As soon as Dr. Pena moved off to retrieve the medicine Misaki looked up at Akihiko with anxious eyes. His fever-flushed face grew pinker.

"I'm s-sorry, Usagi-san… I don't m-mean to m-make problems."

The shake in Misaki's voice made Akihiko's heart clench. It was not a good sign when Misaki began to stutter. He tried to remind himself that the doctors at New Days had warned him about how difficult this would be. They had all been fearful that he and Misaki were leaving too soon. So much damage had been done.

His mind went immediately to one of the other boys who had left New Days weeks before against the staff's warning. He'd committed suicide shortly thereafter.

But then he wasn't Misaki, and he didn't have someone like me beside him…

Stepping over, Akihiko leaned down and pressed a kiss to Misaki's forehead. Though he was shocked at how hot his boy's skin was he kept his voice even.

"You will never be a problem, Misaki."

Before Misaki could protest, the attendant returned with the ice. Akihiko helped him up while he had her pull the double seats out to form a much more comfortable bed. Blankets arranged, Akihiko retrieved Suzuki-san from his single seat and set him up at the head of Misaki's new nest as both guardian and pillow.

If it wasn't for the tranquilizers in his veins and the fever in his head, Misaki would have been more reluctant, but given his present state he allowed Usagi-san to get him settled, all but tucking him in. He sighed, sinking into Suzuki-san's comforting plush as Akihiko placed an icepack behind his neck and one at his crown.

"I can't believe Aikawa-san found Suzuki-san for you, Usagi-san." Misaki's voice was heavy with sleep but sounded happy.

"Yes," Akihiko hummed as he took a new seat across from Misaki where he could keep an eye on him.

Suzuki-san, rather than be a comfort, had become a non-entity when Misaki was taken. Given this, he'd left his previously treasured bear behind with quite a number of other things at the Garopaba flat when they'd ended up taking such sudden residence at New Days. When the case broke, unscrupulous celebrity treasure hunters had broken in and taken most everything.

His amazing editor had taken it upon herself to embark on another search and recovery mission and, with Santo Justino's help, they had somehow tracked the bear down. Aikawa's reasoning for this effort was that Misaki would need a friendly face when he returned to Japan, one that wasn't her author's.

Akihiko winced lightly at his neglect and its result, as Suzuki-san regarded him with an accusatory stare from across the aisle.

"I'll make it up to you, I promise, Old Friend."

The shuffle of feet on the carpet drew his attention away from things he could do to win back Suzuki-san's favor: Dr. Pena had returned with Misaki's pills.

"I'll give them to him."

Akihiko rose and held out his hand. Misaki was already drifting and he didn't want him disturbed. Pena's face darkened at this, but rather than retort he merely dropped the two capsules in to the outstretched palm.

"Give him these and we'll see where's he's at in a few hours." Pena gruffed, before he retreated to the far end of the plane where the atmosphere was notably warmer.

After getting a bottle of water from the attendant, Akihiko moved back to his sleepy lover.


Kneeling beside him, Akihiko cracked the bottle and filled the back of his mouth with water. He placed the capsules on his tongue and leaned over, catching Misaki's mouth with his own as his blossom roused.

Sleepy green eyes widened, but Misaki accepted both the medicine and the kiss. When they parted, still half asleep he snorted. "Stupid, Usagi… Now you're going to get sick too."

A cool hand caressed Misaki's cheek. "No, I'm not. And by tomorrow you won't be sick anymore either."

A small pang on conviction prodded Misaki into fuller wakefulness at these words, knowing that he'd in fact been feeling this way for far longer than Usagi-san could imagine.

He watched Akihiko move back over across from him and sit down, book soon in hand again, waiting for him to nod off before he returned to his novel.

"Yeah, I'll feel better tomorrow, once we're home again." Misaki muttered this half outloud as he sank back down into Suzuki-san's soft lap, eyelids closing already. It was a promise he offered for both and Usagi-san and himself, not knowing that this was one promise he'd never be able to keep.

And that's that dear readers… the end of one tale and the beginning of another. All my fellow Egoists please forgive me for stealing that Hiroki/Nowaki scene for "Into the Light."

At this moment, I want you to know I do intend to write "Into the Light" at some point, but please don't expect this anytime soon. I have so many other stories to finish, including the original "Uke Flu."

Of course feedback and comments are always much appreciated. Even if one has just joined this fic or comes into this story months from now I love hearing from you, like that dear anonymous reader who recently reviewed. It was her/him, Vegeta42, and Dragonish that got me back on the ball with their encouragement.

And now I bid you all adieu (for now) after listing, with special gratitude, all my reviewers...

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